Strolling down the grungy streets of the Fashion District in downtown Los Angeles is an inexplicable experience that will invigorate you and inundate all of your senses. The desolate buildings, pungent aromas and colorful people is what gives DTLA its character, and creates an enigmatic atmosphere with an eclectic undertone.
Some of the best things are hidden within the borders of DTLA’s Fashion District, adding another layer of appeal to the sub-neighborhood of LA. Tucked away inside the hub of the Fashion District is WOODSPOON, one of DTLA’s hidden gems and best Brazilian eateries.
WOODSPOON is an inconspicuous restaurant that can be easily missed unless you’re intently looking for it. The outside of WOODSPOON is subtle, only identifiable by the image of an actual wooden spoon that sits atop of the restaurant entrance—that is until you actually enter. The vibrant Afro-Latin themed bistro is enthralling, and reflects the heritage of its owner, Afro-Brazilian chef slash restaurateur Natalia Pereira.
As soon as you walk into WOODSPOON you are hit with the scent of sweet cinnamon, and your vision is filled with beautiful floral place settings. The intimate eating house is like a small piece of Brazil, infused with gorgeous floral arrangements, a compact altar and intoxicating Latin music that pervades throughout the entire quaint space.
WOODSPOON’s interior design is exquisite, and the food is equally impressive. Albeit the menu is modest, it’s filled with the most delectable and prominent Brazilian street-food dishes. Those that are newbies to the Brazilian food culture will immediately fall in love with Latin American food after trying WOODSPOON’s Coxinha, Portuguese Pastel, Yucca Fries and Kibe.
The Coxinha, Portuguese Pastel and Kibe are different variations of croquettes, each consisting of a distinct filling that includes either: creamy cheese, spiced beef, chicken and/or shrimp. Alongside the tasty croquettes, WOODSPOON also offers Brazilian-style lightly fried chicken bites and Yucca Fries—which are made with sweet cassava flour— a healthier alternative to traditional potato fries.
These appetizer dishes are just the tip of the iceberg, and even more deliciousness is to be found in the entrees. WOODSPOON’s menu is versatile, and has something for everyone’s palette, even if that palette is skewed to prefer dishes that are more reminiscent of popular American meals.
Their Brazilian Chicken Pot Pie, a.k.a Empadão de Frango, crust is so flakey it melts in your mouth, and has a sweet cream filling that pleases every taste bud. In addition to their tasty chicken pot pie, the eatery also serves seasoned seafood, pork, beef and lamb dishes that have a high yummy content.
When I made the glorious decision to eat at the fabulous WOODSPOON for the first time I was in the mood for seafood, and of course their menu satisfied that desire. The Seafood Bowl offered by WOODSPOON comes to the table piping hot, and contains super fresh shrimp, mussels and clams lightly doused in a wine broth.
WOODSPOON’s Brazilian cuisine is delightful, and gives eager foodies in LA a chance to experience the food of Brazil without leaving the city. The entire ambience of WOODSPOON is soothing, and makes the dine-in experience that much more enjoyable. If you’re ever in DTLA and looking for good Latin food, than definitely stop by WOODSPOON!